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Tip of the Week

Tip of the Week

2/24/09 - Non-coaching Staff/Managers

All,

It has been awhile since we sent a Tip of the Week so here is a new one. Below is an educational column that was just issued from the NCAA and forwarded to us through the America East Associate Commissioner for Compliance Brian Barrio. The Educational Column focuses on non-coaching staff members (e.g. managers, Director of Operations, sport-specific strength/conditioning coaches, etc.). Given the proliferation of these types of positions over the past few years, Brian thought it would be good idea to communicate the following to all of you.

Of particular note is the reminder below of the institution's responsibility to ensure that non-coaching staff members such as Director of Operations are not involved in any way at practice beyond attending and observing; and, that while they may sit on the bench/sideline during contests they must not engage in any coaching activities. Also note the distinction between individuals in these non-coaching staff positions and those individuals serving as student or non-student managers.

Any questions, please let us know.

Thank You.

Donna

Educational Column Limitations on the Number and Duties of Coaches -- Responsibilities of Noncoaching Staff Members and Managers (I)
Date Published: February 5, 2009

NCAA Division I institutions should note that any individual who participates in any manner in the coaching of a sport in practice, games or organized activities directly related to that sport must be counted as a coach as stipulated in the limitations for that sport in NCAA Division I Bylaw 11.7. In addition to competitive equity, the intent of the coaching limitations is to restrict the actual coaching of student-athletes to those individuals who are identified as coaches. A strength and conditioning coach does not need to be included in the institution's coaching limitations for a specific sport provided the individual only conducts flexibility, warm up and physical conditioning activities before contests and before or during practices or other organized activities. Other athletics department staff members, including managers and noncoaching staff members with sport-specific responsibilities (e.g., administrative assistants, directors of operations, quality control personnel, directors of player development, video coordinators, assistant/associate athletics directors for specific sports), do not have to be included in the institution's coaching limitations provided they do not engage in any on- or off-field coaching activities, off-campus recruiting activities or scouting of opponents. Specific prohibited activities include, but are not limited to, attending meetings involving coaching activities, analyzing videotape or film involving the institution's or an opponent's team, and participation in or observation of student-athletes in the staff member's sport who are engaged in nonorganized voluntary athletically related activities.

Managers It is not permissible to hire a manager to perform only on-court or on-field activities (e.g., ball shagging, bounce-passing drills, throw batting practice). Nonstudent managers may not perform any on-court or on-field duties that could be considered coaching without counting in the coaching limitations stipulated in Bylaw 11.7. Student managers may perform limited on-court or on-field activities during practice, games and organized activities (e.g., ball shagging, bounce-passing drills, throw batting practice, signaling in plays at the direction of a coaching staff member) provided they also perform traditional managerial functions (e.g., run clock at practice, laundry, fill water bottles). Finally, under no circumstances may a manager provide skill instruction without being counted in the coaching limitations.

Noncoaching Staff Members with Sport-Specific Responsibilities Noncoaching staff members with sport-specific responsibilities may not perform any on-court or on-field duties that could be considered coaching during practice, games and organized activities (e.g., ball shagging, bounce-passing drills, throw batting practice, signaling in plays) without counting in the coaching limitations stipulated in Bylaw 11. For example, if a director of softball operations throws batting practice, the director of softball operations must be counted toward the coaching limitations in Bylaw 11 even if no skill instruction is provided. While noncoaching staff members with sport-specific responsibilities should not be involved in any manner with practice activities, it is permissible for these individuals to observe practice without having to count toward the coaching limitations. Finally, noncoaching staff members with sport specific responsibilities may sit on an institution's bench or stand on the sidelines during an institution's contest provided the individual does not engage in any coaching activities. If an institution permits noncoaching staff members with sport specific responsibilities to sit on the bench or stand on the sidelines during games, the institution is responsible for ensuring that these individuals are not engaging in any coaching activities. [References: Bylaw 11.7 (limitations on the number and duties of coaches), official interpretation (2/11/93, Item No. 9), and staff interpretations (5/2/07, item 1a) and 11/19/97, item b) and 2004 Hot Topic #2 (4/9/04)].

Staff Interpretation Strength and Conditioning Coaches -- Exceptions to Number Limits (I)
Date Published: May 2, 2007

The membership services staff confirmed that strength and conditioning coaches who conduct only flexibility, warm-up and physical conditioning activities prior to any game and prior to or during any practice or other organized activities, are not subject to the limits on the number of coaches an institution may designate to fill coaching categories. In addition, the staff determined that an institution may contract with or hire such strength and conditioning coaches in accordance with institutional policies and procedures applicable to all employees or independent contractors, even if those policies and procedures do not require them to be considered institutional employees.

Tip of the Week Archive